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Jul 31 2011

F1: Hungaroring

I told you most of what’s worth knowing yesterday.  Since then there’s been a lot of pushback from British Formula One fans on the BSkyB deal but Bernie seems to be exploiting a loophole in the Team agreement that says that as long as some of the the races available on free TV the teams can’t block it.  On the other hand there is no real team agreement, just a temporary letter of extension that expires at the end of the season and the sponsors, who are in this for the advertising are pissed, and they have deep pockets.  Bernie is tring to buy them off with a $1.7 million cut each from the $680 million deal.  Like the New York Times paywall, Bernie’s last experiment in Pay TV in the 90s had to be dropped because it was just flat out unprofitable.  He couldn’t deliver the audience.

Teams are also asking for a rethink of the 2012 Schedule because it has 7 races in 10 weeks.

You’re going to get sick of the phrase “Monaco without the houses“, but there’s no denying the 2.73 mile track is twisty with lots of elevation change and no long straights.  This is thought to disfavor the Red Bulls which won’t be able to show their speed.  Teams will be running their big high down force wings that we haven’t seen since the Principality (though they’ve been re-engineered) and McLaren is thought not to have as effective a Drag Reduction System as some.  Red Bull is having difficulties of their own charging their KERS electric boost system which sucks so much energy out of the cars that it’s effecting brake balance and causing slips and spins.

It’s also usually very hot which will stress engines, brakes, and tires, tires, tires.  You’ll hear a lot about tires since they were decisive at Nurburgring with McLaren doing exceptionally well on stop times and Hamilton extracting unexpected performance out of the harder compound to thwart 2 passing attempts by Red Bull and Ferrari.  Given the speeds (actually slower than Monaco) there is a one pit strategy possible despite the Super Soft compound.  Still, the alternate Softs are not much different in performance and while Buemi and STR may fancy themselves clever by saving all 3 sets of the Supers in Qualifying given their 5 position penalty (for which they got a bad rap in my opinion, I think the replays show Heidfeld is just as responsible) there might not be enough race to use them all up before they are forced to switch to the just plain Softs.

The Silverstone and Nurburgring results didn’t change the standings as much as the announcers would have you believe.  The Driver’s Championship is a 3 way tie for second between Hamilton, Webber, and Alonso.  In the Team competition once again McLaren failed to finish both of its cars.

Your half hour of hype starts at 7:30 am on Speed.  Rebroadcast 4:30 this afternoon.  I want to once again encourage you to read this great piece on the 1936 race.  My last year’s coverage is here and here.

This is the 11th race of 19 and the last before the summer break.  We will resume August 27th in Spa.

Pretty tables below.

Starting Grid

Grid Driver Team Q-Time Q-Laps
1 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 01:19.8 14
2 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 01:20.0 12
3 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 01:20.0 15
4 Felipe Massa Ferrari 01:20.4 15
5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 01:20.4 15
6 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 01:20.5 16
7 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 01:21.1 12
8 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 01:21.4 19
9 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 01:21.9 17
10 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 01:22.2 16
11 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 01:22.3 13
12 Vitaly Petrov Renault 01:22.3 14
13 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 01:22.4 16
14 Nick Heidfeld Renault 01:22.5 14
15 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 01:22.7 16
16 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 01:23.0 10
17 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth 01:23.8 9
18 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus-Renault 01:24.4 8
19 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault 01:24.5 7
20 Timo Glock Virgin-Cosworth 01:26.3 10
21 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT-Cosworth 01:26.3 11
22 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 01:24.1 9
23 Daniel Ricciardo HRT-Cosworth 01:26.5 11
24 Jerome d’Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth 01:26.5 8

Driver Standings

Rank Driver Team Points
1 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 216
2 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 139
3 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 134
4 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 130
5 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 109
6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 62
7 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 46
8 Nick Heidfeld Renault 34
9 Vitaly Petrov Renault 32
10 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 32
11 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 27
12 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 18
13 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 9
14 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 8
15 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 8
16 Rubens Barrichello Williams-Cosworth 4
17 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 2

Constructor Standings

Rank Team Points
1 Red Bull 355
2 McLaren 243
3 Ferrari 192
4 Mercedes 78
5 Renault 66
6 Sauber 35
7 Force India 20
8 Toro Rosso 17
9 Williams 4

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